Monday, February 01, 2010
Of the major showbiz awards shows, I only watch the Emmys for professional reasons, and at this point I mainly stick with the Oscars for work, as well. (It's a movie awards show, but it's also one of the most-watched TV shows of the year, so I tend to write about it.)
The Grammys, though, I watch for personal reasons. First, it helps me come out from behind my niche-y iPod playlists to get a reminder for a night of what's going on in popular music. Second, I'm a sucker for unconventional duets, which the Grammy telecast has offered up a lot of in recent years. Sometimes, they're incredible (Joss Stone and Melissa Etheridge sing Janis Joplin), and sometimes they fizzle, but they're always interesting to look at to see why one combination works, another doesn't, etc.
Last night, Taylor Swift was the big winner of the night, winning Album of the Year, but she was also part of the evening's most memorably awkward duet, when she teamed up with Stevie Nicks for a medley that included Nicks' "Rhiannon." Swift has carved out a very impressive career for herself by working hard, being very well-rehearsed (see her "surprised" reaction to every single awards victory she's had in the last year) and understanding her strengths (personality, songwriting, stagecraft) and weaknesses (limited vocal range). Placed next to Nicks, and handed a song that wasn't written with her skill set in mind, Swift gave the kind of performance where, if it had happened on "American Idol," Paula Abdul would have started her comments by telling Taylor how pretty she looked.
Hey, it happens, and on balance her night worked out very well for her. So, for those of you who also watched last night, what were some of your favorite and/or least favorite performances, and why?
Posted by Alan Sepinwall at 11:02 AM